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From The MNB Archives
Monday, January 14, 2013
Amazon Said To Be Removing Negative Reviews Of Its Fulfillment Service
VentureBeat.com has a piece about Amazon's fulfillment service for third-party sellers, which it says tends to be more expensive than other options but generally is chosen by vendors because "Amazon tilts user feedback ratings to favor its own shipping service ... According to its terms of service, Amazon reserves the right to remove negative feedback about a shipping-related issue, such as delivery delays or corrupt packaging - but only for sellers that opt-in to Amazon’s fulfillment service ... Rival providers of fulfillment services claim this is stifling the growth of the business, and is an anti-competitive practice. An Amazon spokesperson declined to comment."
The piece suggests that Amazon probably isn't doing anything illegal by slanting the reviews in its favor, even if competing fulfillment services are less expensive and maybe even more reliable. And, the fact seems to be that companies using Amazon's fulfillment services tend to be seen as higher in the search rankings, which would make sense, since Amazon is more in control of the process.